Parkinson's disease

Nicolas - Interview 23

Age at interview: 47
Age at diagnosis: 44

Brief outline: Diagnosed 4 years ago, Nicolas now takes a low dose of Mirapexin. He works full time. He experiences stiffness, tiredness and difficulties with walking and handwriting.

Background: Separated, 2 children Aerospace Chief Engineer.

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Diagnosed four years ago, Nicolas had symptoms of stiffness and muscle aches for fifteen years. But it was only when his handwriting deteriorated that he thought there may be something seriously wrong. He went to his GP who referred him to a neurologist, which he saw on a private basis through his employer’s health scheme. After he was diagnosed, his occupational health department at work provided physiotherapy and put him in contact with the Parkinson’s Disease Society. He now goes to his local Young Persons group, which has been a very good source of information and support. The local Parkinson’s nurse specialist has been very helpful in providing practical advice.  He advises others to find similar support when they are first diagnosed.


He was initially prescribed three different types of medication but none seemed to make any difference so the consultant advised that he managed without any medication. In the last year he has been prescribed a low dose of Mirapexin, by a different consultant.


Nicolas works full time and finds his work is most affected by difficulties with handwriting, mobility, travel and tiredness. But he finds solutions and ways round any difficulties that arise.


He tries to exercise as much as possible and has regular massage to keep supple and ease any stiffness and muscle aches. Nicolas attended the National Centre for Conductive Education in Birmingham which offers physiotherapy exercises that are attuned to everyday activities. He was assessed and offered up to 15 free sessions, which he found very helpful. One thing he learnt was techniques for managing difficulties with handwriting.


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